Thursday, June 23, 2016

White Boy Rick's re-sentencing appeal denied

Posted By on Thu, Jun 23, 2016 at 11:22 AM

Richard Wershe Jr., commonly known as former Detroit drug dealer White Boy Rick, was denied a re-sentencing appeal Wednesday by the Michigan Supreme Court, as reported by the Detroit Free Press.

Wershe was sentenced in 1988 at the age of 17 to life in prison without parole on cocaine trafficking charges, after a prolific career as a rising young drug kingpin who was an FBI informant. 
click to enlarge Richard Wershe's mugshot
  • Richard Wershe's mugshot

After changes in drug sentencing laws, Wershe became eligible for parole, but has been denied every time, including most recently in 2012.

The re-sentencing appeal's reasoning was based on the change of juvenile sentencing laws and precedents since his conviction, citing that his conviction at 17 would now be considered unconstitutional. The Michigan Supreme Court decided otherwise, saying that the sentence is not now unconstitutional.

White Boy Rick's story highlights the fast and loose, and probably reckless methods government agencies use in investigating crimes, and the possible inconsistencies in drug-related crime law, prosecutions, and sentences.
click to enlarge MDOC PHOTO
  • MDOC photo

This appeal reached Michigan Supreme Court after being passed on by Wayne County Circuit Judge Dana Hathaway. Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy filed to appeal Hathaway's decision soon after.

Wershe is still eligible for parole, and can apply again in 2017.

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